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Immigrant Effects, Part 7

There are about a hundred US hospitals along the US / Mexican border. Each of these hospitals loses an average of two million dollars a year for the treatment of just illegals brought in through the emergency room due to debilitation from exposure. Many of these illegals can spend six months in intensive care with an average daily cost of $2,000. Usually these cases are from heat stroke and the prognosis is very poor. The families do not allow the hospital to discontinue life support and at some point the patient is returned to Mexico where they then die. Yes, even half a million dollars to maintain the illegal who is incapable of ever regaining consciousness and is then returned to Mexico where they die.

The Immigration and Naturalization Service is proud to state that the increase in illegal alien traffic has been less than 275,000 a year. No, that is not the number of illegals crossing the border, that is the modest increase in the yearly number of illegals crossing the border.

In 1965, the number of illegal aliens apprehended by the US Border Patrol was 110,000. In fiscal year 1996 that number was 1,650,000. The number of apprehensions is not the number of people who entered the country illegally. The number apprehended is the number of illegal aliens the US Border Patrol actually caught. For every illegal alien caught, the US Border Patrol estimates that they miss four. The good news in this equation is that some of the illegal aliens the US Border Patrol catches are quickly deported only to quickly try again. Thus the real number of illegals actually being caught (subtracting the multiple attempts) might be as low as 1,200,000. Yes, the US Border Patrol may only be capturing a little over a million illegals a year. So instead of possibly 6.5 million illegals getting through the real number may only be 4.8 million.

There is a certain level of insanity to all of these numbers. Because, it seems, showing that large numbers of illegal aliens are entering the country may alarm the populace (especially today), and so the numbers are to be kept low. How are the numbers kept low? The US Border Patrol Agent in the field is tacitly encouraged NOT to apprehend illegals. Yes, just let them through. The logic is that if the statistics show a low apprehension rate then -- by multiplying by four -- the number of illegals entering the country must also be lower and thus the US Border Patrol is doing its job.

Border Patrol management is under extreme pressure to placate Mr. Chertoff and Mr. Bush in their plans for a happy future for the United States.

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